Huge (365)

This was a huge task we undertook in trying to do this blog, every single day for 365 days. And safe to say we haven’t completed it, not even close, but we also haven’t failed… Not in my opinion at least.

We thought we could do it because we said that we wouldn’t have to write much at all if we didn’t want to or couldn’t that day… A simple “I can’t do this one today, sorry folks”, or a one liner about the word of the day. No big obligation for a long or interesting post… Just a response. Any response.

I think we overlooked something pretty vital in that… Pocketcanadians and my nature. We don’t tend to do things feebly. We don’t want to give short meaningless responses to words that aren’t meaningless to us. And I’m actually saying this without checking it with her, but I think (maybe, pc?) that the same goes for her.

There’s something about a word coming up and feeling unable to write all of the things that are floating around in your head, and then not wanting to write a rubbish couple-of-sentences response, because then it feels like you’re passing that word by. There are words on here that are so difficult… Family members, grief, attachment, therapy… Not to mention to seemingly innocuous ones for each of us (persistent, for myself springs to mind. I once got very upset with pocketcanadian for using this word to describe me).

I want to finish all of these words. And I want to properly respond to all of the ones that invoke a reaction in me. I don’t want to pass a word by with a sarcastic or silly comment because I couldn’t handle it that day.

And I know that pocketcanadian wants to finish these words too.

So, I don’t know how it will look right now… Whether we’ll manage to reshuffle the words we haven’t done and again have it as a surprise word… Maybe this time as a word a week rather than a word a day. Or maybe we’ll just do it as and when we can and forget about coordinating our responses.

I don’t know what its going to look like, but I know that neither of us are done with these words just yet, even though we’ve been entirely rubbish at them the last several months. It was a huge task, a word a day, and I’m still proud of what we made with this space, that anybody at all followed us and sometimes read along. (thank you all of you who did that). And I’m ready for another year of trying to write things out of my head and into this space…

Raise (324)

Okay I kept thinking of the odd weird phrase…. “I take your five smarties and I raise you five smarties and 1 strawberry lace” (yes this is how you play cards)….”raise the roof”… I don’t even know what other weird sayings.

Then I just looked at this ridiculous word that for some reason one of us chose, and ironically raised my eyebrow. Or at least, I felt like I was raising my eyebrow, my eyebrows don’t like to work independently.

Receptive (323)

Safe to say, I am absolutely not a receptive person. Actually, perhaps that isn’t quite accurate – I’m absolutely not a receptive person when it comes to suggestions regarding myself. I am not receptive to things that could be done to “improve” the way I do things. Every suggestion feels like a slight, like a comment on what is wrong with me. It is taken on board as something to prove all of those voices that tell me I am inherently wrong because of X, Y and Z. And queue the instant shame. This of course isn’t something that I am happy with and want to maintain. I don’t think it would go down too well with future employers if I wrote I am a very receptive person provided the suggestions for improvement are not regarding myself. I suspect this is part of my trauma….the monumental shame, the way that a simple suggestion of something that might make something better/easier turns into a personal slight. A this is why you’re awful, see nobody likes you, nobody wants you here, you’re just wrong down to your core.  A spiral that happens fairly regularly actually, about all sorts of things.

The first thing that I thought of when I saw today’s word was being receptive to help. I’ve had the first therapy session after a 3 week break, and I finally went back and was receptive to the idea of seeking other outside help. Not wholly receptive – it’s totally making me panic tonight, and yet it’s an option. I’ve allowed it to be an option that we are going to look into. But for reference, this option was suggested to me over a month ago, and when it was I got extremely angry about it, rejected it, refused help, and was full of loud mixed feelings. I refused to even think about the possibility of accepting help. No effing way. Somebody internally screaming THIS IS NOT SAFE. THIS IS NOT SAFE. THIS IS NOT SAFE. Yes, that loud, and yes, with that much panic. It was a week or two full of panic.

I’m generally not receptive to anything ‘good’. It is a part of being closed off and holding myself in tight and staying safe. It took me a long time to come around to the idea of therapy or seeing somebody to talk to. A lot of calming parts that wanted to blare a red siren because our safety was being compromised by allowing somebody else into our world. And part of my attachment hurts mean that this crops up frequently. I haven’t actually had normal once a week on the designated day therapy with my therapist for several months. As soon as we get back into the swing of a couple of good sessions something goes wrong inside and I panic and it becomes unsafe. I spiral into this isn’t safe, she doesn’t care, who are you kidding, she wouldn’t care if you were even alive, she thinks you’re an idiot, she thinks you are making a big deal out of nothing, who the hell are you kidding?! And so hey presto, get ready for a session (or the next 4) of being closed off, refusing to talk, getting really angry and refusing to be receptive to care or help. Its not a fun cycle.

Something that is extra making me panic tonight about receiving outside help is that it will be free – on the NHS. And I don’t like that because that makes it feel all the more unsafe. I don’t know exactly why, maybe because it feels like they won’t be as conscious of confidentiality, maybe because they will be more likely to be annoyed and think that I’m there for no reason and that I’m making a big deal out of nothing. ugh.

Travel (315)

I haven’t ever travelled, really. I was born in the UK and have lived here almost all of my life. For a few years when I was very young we moved to a nearby European country. The extent of places I have visited are very narrow: skiing trips to France and Austria, a sailing holiday around the coast of northern spain and france, a couple of family holidays to spain or france.

I’ve never been outside of Europe, and the thought actually just terrifies me a bit. I could never have been one of those teenagers, off to travel and see far places after finishing their A-Levels. I would love to go to far away places, to experience different cultures and see amazing things. And yet I also really wouldn’t like to. I don’t know what it is…I don’t like flying but it isn’t even that. I think its maybe something to do with a total lack of routine, and not knowing what you are doing. I don’t know, and it’s so stupid, but it makes me so anxious the thought of it. And then mad at myself, for not being better than that.

I’m off to Canada really soon, and that’s as structured and safe as it could possibly be. Once I’m there I won’t have to worry about anything, and the getting there is simply one bus and one plane. Both direct. And yet ugh the panic of it. So so stupid. So stupid. Travelling clearly is not for me.

Written 11/08 and backdated

Iron (290)

Okay I just came back here to see what words I’ve not seen whilst I took a bit of a hiatus, and this immediately made me smile. I think mostly thinking about which one of us must’ve put this in our list of words (pocketcanadian, I’m looking at you).

You see, I am british and I iron things so that I don’t look unkempt. My canadian friend across the seas finds this literally painful. In particular when I show her my nice neat stacks of freshly ironed clothes on the kitchen table, (including bed sheets…cue canadian horror). One time I convinced her that I actually ironed my underwear and socks (freshly laundered knickers, why not?), and the horror it invoked…oh you should’ve seen it people.

Silence(d) (287)

Sometimes I feel like I’ve come absolutely nowhere. When I’m feeling low and it’s all terrible, I think that I’m doing nothing. I’m weak and had might as well be dead. I’m feeling a lot like that today.

A big pull for me is that nothing has changed and nothing ever will, and that my life isn’t worth living.

And that’s hard. Really hard. Difficult to counteract. Because lots has changed, when I look at all of the individual details, and that’s just about to keep me going, except looking at the big picture, what’s changed? Absolutely nothing.

I think it’s easy to overlook how things felt before though. When I’m not thinking about it, I don’t remember the terrible agony of always wondering if I should tell my parents, and the subsequent agony of but what would they do if I told. And what I forget these days is how I ruminated over that every single day. And I mean every single day. I would berate myself for being weak, for doing nothing, I’d question if it would all be better, or all be worse. I would go over and over a million what ifs. All the while the stone of silence sitting heavy in my gut.

That changed, not really because I was ready or wanted it to, but I absolutely don’t regret it. Not one bit. I needed to stop being silenced in that way. And I’m not now, the people I feared being told most in the world have been told.

The part that makes me crumble and feel so alone? They dont really care, nothing has really changed. Now we’re keeping the secret together from my brother. Because he’s the important one, he’s the one they can’t bear to lose.